Over the years, I have decided not just to put all my paper and plastic and glass into recycling bins, but that I will also practice recycling by not buying a lot of new stuff. How much furniture have I bought in my adult life! How much have I resold, donated, thrown on the street as trash! I have nothing — nothing — (furniture-wise) that I had ten years ago!
Of course, you don’t take much with you when you move from one continent to another and aren’t rich or have an employer who’ll cover the costs. That’s my excuse.
But now, most of what I owned WAS somebody else’s ten years ago. And that makes me proud. So there.
I’ve always loved old stuff, so it’s not been hard for me. And I was in love with “mid-century modern” before it had a name.
My new furnishings (I won’t buy more, the house is full) consist of a sofa, a beautiful shelf unit, the kitchen cart, my desk, filing cabinet and the bed and nightstand in the guest bedroom (Ikea), which I wouldn’t have gotten if I hadn’t had a guest coming.
I prowl the thrift stores and the ReStores if I have the time (not enough), I browse Etsy and craigslist. I find stuff on the street (3 chairs so far!).
And I re-use stuff that came with the house. I had walls pulled out in the basement and re-use the two-by-fours for new walls and other things. Had a cinder block wall torn down and the basement door removed and built a tool bench from them. The cinder blocks and some of the plywood are also supporting my new washer and dryer (those things I get new!).
The favorite thing that I found when I tore the walls around the basement stairs down were remnants of rolls of wallpaper. I think they’re from the 1930s or 1940s. Maybe later. The shocking thing was: they’re my colors! There wasn’t much that was usable because they’d been chewed on my generations of mice, but, by god, I did use them. If only as a tribute to former dwellers.
Now I will introduce you to my “finds”:
Now I never showed you my dining room furniture. Maybe next time. And next post I’ll tell you about the chairs from the street!